Reasons my Android app failed, and yours might too! - but I'm not down!

The shake in the knees

Understanding the weakness that your app or game has is vital. It helps you build better app, improve your existing app, plus a few other things which I'll cover here.

I release my highly successful app, Photo Story Camera FX app on the market, and it was such a runaway success, you really gotta download it!

Ok ok! I Lied!... That camera app has been my worst launch day app ever!!!

The release

I released the camera app, hoping to get a good amount of download. It failed miserably! I cant believe my eyes when I saw only 7 downloads over 24hours period! Goodness gracious me!

Though the download count wasn't what I expected, I guess I was ready for a bad download count. I knew it was gonna be a bad launch. (Still 7 downloads is a shocker! Please download the app and give it a 5 star rating! :D  ) What went wrong? Here are a few pointers of what NOT to do:

1 - Avoid rushed jobs

The app was developed in a very short time, less than a week of working part time on it. On Sunday, down with terrible flu, I decided that I'd just get the first version out there and see the response. The basic functionality was there, and I did want to get the app out in alpha stage anyway. So I just put in the bare basic to get it to work and published it.

Avoid this. When you make an app, the 80/20 rules apply too. The last 20% of development will take 80% of the time. Get the product more completed before you release it.

2 - Lacking features

This is one major issue with my product. Seriously, when you want to release an app, ask yourself, if you were to browse through the Android Market, will you download your own app? Does it have what you need it to do? Your answer will reflect how the market sees your product. A half baked cake isnt gonna sell!

3 - Not attractive UI / UX

User interface and experience plays very heavily. The BIGGEST "sales-person" for your products is going to be the eye candy! Images tell the story, and it is important to get some good graphics out if you're gonna sell. As a developer, I am not artist, and I really need to put in more effort into this. If you cant, there are options to get help from outside freelancers.

4 - Not attractive icon

This is hard to say, as I thought my icon was pretty outstanding in this category. Yet, it wasn't attractive enough. It is personal taste, I know, but really, who am I selling the app to? Myself? NO! I am NOT the customer here. So... back to the drawing board!

5 - No mass appeal

Well, this MIGHT be partially connected to my app, but more broadly, it might apply to any app. An app that has no mass appeal will not get downloaded, and not move up the charts. Simple really. You need people to download your app (this also effects your revenue). And to download, you need people to be interested in your app. If you're a fan of the Perth Kangaroo football team and think that making an app for that would be awesome, well, then you're NOT gonna get them downloads. Instead try making an app for Manchester United (which has fans all over the world). My app has mass appeal. I know a camera app will have many takers. But I need the featues i to really appeal to people.

6 - Unsearchable

This is another problem that often comes up. Your app is not search-able! You type in some good keywords for your app, but it comes out way way down the list. Who in their right minds is gonna scroll that far to download an app? Remember, you app needs to be found-able (TM) to be downloaded. Without the "Just-In" list of yesteryears, you must make sure your app is optimised for the market's search engine. Also remember the name of your app carries a BIG weight in searchability.

Why does all this not bring me down?

I'll tell you why. The development "expenses" was super low for this. It fits with all my tips that I've given.

I am very certain, over the coming days, the download will go up (again, I could be wrong here). This app needs to be search-able. The app has all the right ingredients:

1 - A keyword filled title
2 - Has mass appeal
3 - Still new, more features will be added in
4 - It's ugly, it can only get better :D
5 - Promotion via social media will get it to grow huge fast

Again, all the above is what I wish will happen, and what I will work to make happen.

Lets see how it goes, and I'll post the updates here. Remember to download the camera app here.

Keep an eye out for my next project!



PS - Just checked before posting this, download is up to 22 now! Yabadabadu!


  1. These seem like guesses to me. Do you have any data to support your claim ? If not maybe you should be saying that these are what you *think* the reasons why your app was not successful.

  2. Hi Johno

    Thanks for dropping by. Well, the above are my deduction from the camera app that I've been working on. The reasons are specific that that one app alone.

    If you'd have a look at the app, you'll agree on the above points.

    But yes, these are my thoughts, there i *think* these are the reasons... apology if the title mis-lead anyone...


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